On Writing: ASK AWAY!!


Most of my readers, from what I can tell, are writers or aspiring writers.

Bloggers, columnists, authors, poets, storytellers, dreamers…

And we all have so many questions! How do you complete projects? How should you publish your book? What the heck’s wrong with all these literary agents rejecting every single one of your brilliant ideas???

Sure, you could Google these questions and get general answers to the public, but I’m offering you a chance to post your questions about the writing world below.

I will do my best to answer them in separate blog posts. Leave your name, your blog or website and I’ll mention you as the asker of the brilliant question. I know I’m no John Grisham (he’s not answering questions as far as I know) or James Patterson (does he even WRITE??), but I’m focused on reaching their level and well on my way with two books coming out this  year that are projected to be pretty big: an emotionally-driven YA novel about a girl who falls in love with a boy *AFTER* he dies, and a powerful biography about a patient advocate doctor who sued a multibillion-dollar insurance company for violation of fair procedure. 

So, I may be in the same boat as you, and I’ve got questions myself, or you may even be ahead of me. But we still can learn a lot from each other.

Ready? Set. ASK!

Seriously, email me if you want an advanced copy of my YA book: These Great Affects

Follow me on Twitter: @atoy1208

Or Facebook

Published by Andrew Toy

Writer when I'm not being a husband or dad. So mostly just a husband and dad.

49 thoughts on “On Writing: ASK AWAY!!

    1. The best way I know to do this is to highlight what you want to link. So type in, “Click here” of for instance. Then click on the link button when you’re writing a post (Looks like a paper clip), and then it will ask you to paste the link you want to put in. Click Done and you’re set; you’ll see it embedded as a link people can click on. Hope this helps!

    1. In order to get followers for my blog, I spend a lot of time visiting other bloggers, liking their stuff, commenting, and following their blogs. I see it akin to walking into a store, browsing around, and leaving my business card to let them know I’ve stopped by. Of course, if I see something I like, I’ll buy it! To get advanced readers I simply post about my books on my blog and ask if anyone’s up to reading them.

    1. In what ways do you mean where do I start? Mentally? Point in the book? And as far as going to someone to write a book are you talking about publishers vs. agents?

  1. Do you have any tips for maintaining the drive necessary to actually complete a novel? I have multiple ideas and have started numerous projects…finishing things, however is a problem.

    1. I’ve found that copy right issues are not that big a deal on blogs, but in books and printed work, that’s where you need to watch out. If you reference a song or book or movie or show, ALWAYS give credit to the source. The way I get people to my blog is twofold: 1) Spend lots of time visiting other blogs and like their posts and comment so they know you stopped by, and 2) Study your stats and keep writing on the topics people seem to like most.

    1. I just realized, after I posted your answer, that you asked about blogging, not writing. I’ll be addressing blogging soon.

    1. I will be glad to answer this in a post, but do you have any blog/info you’d like me to post along with it? A name, perhaps? “The Writer’s Chronicles” isn’t clickable for me.

  2. How do you protect yourself legally when you use real names in your memoir/non-fiction? If you plan to include photos/document excerpts for people to view then the changing of the names would not resolve this issue.

    1. When writing nonfiction/memoirs, always – and I mean ALWAYS – give everyone fictional names. Unless the person is cast in a very favorable light and you get their permission to use their real name, which is rare. For photos/documents, you would have to get their written permission to use them.

  3. What do you look for before hitting the “Follow” button at a blog?

    Is it random? Or do you look for something in particular? What place does a blog’s genre hold?

    And lastly, how do you decide the point beyond which the story goes from “tragically beautiful” to “ruthlessly horrible”?

    1. Hi! Okay, so in regards to following blogs, I try to visit at least 10-20 blogs a day. I follow each one, because it’s like leaving my business card at a store. I scan through them and if they’re something I am interested in, I’ll write it down and be sure to revisit later to keep up.

      As far a a blog’s genre, I’m not sure what you mean by this. I’m starting a new blog soon, which will focus solely on writing and publishing, seeing that that has been the direction of Adopting James as of late, and I don’t want to confuse the two topics of writing and adoption.

      Can you please elaborate on what you mean by deciding the point from “tragically beautiful” to “ruthlessly horrible”?

      1. Hello. Thanks for your reply
        “tragically beautiful” is about something like a phoenix taking birth from its own ashes. Like overcoming a lot of obstacles and ending up triumphant after losing a bit of things that matter. “ruthlessly horrible” is something where people stop reading due to the extreme evil and pain caused to hero who ends up losing a lot of his people ruthlessly and losing at the end or barely winning at all.

        I meant to ask how to decide the point before which readers sympathize with the hero for his loses and the point after which readers are simply too disgusted to read further.

        Does it depend upon the readers? Like people with weak hearts? Or one can use loses to bind readers to a character? How to do so effectively?

  4. Hi, i want to ask to you. What are you doing when you have a imagination about something, and you dont have enough that knowledge. Maybe, you imagine about people with his gun, but you dont have enough information about gun. What should you do? Asking in public group? Searching information from internet? Ask friends?

    Thank you, hope you reply it. 🙂

    1. Google! Google and talk to friends/experts on the subjects. Always research and get your facts straight. It will almost always seem like a waste of time, but in the end, you won’t be sorry.

  5. Hi, I often write about writing at my blog a Storybook (by Denise claas). Most of the time, I just write about what I struggle with and what answers I can find. But There is this thing I can’t get out of the way.
    I am hoping that you might have the brilliance, that I am lacking, on this departement.

    Often I find I have a lot of inspiration. Too much inspiration. Ideas seem to just flow out of me and I soon lose track of what I should be doing: writing. But then again, I don’t want to lose all these good ideas, because, one of them might actually be useful or good, so I write them down in one of the million little books I have hidden around the house.

    However, I never seem to have the right book at hand, or I have fifteen ideas for the same problem, and I can’t seem to find the one I need.

    My question: Do you know of any (use any) brilliant ways, to bring these ideas together, and make them easier to use? It would help me get more time for my writing and less, time to look for a certain idea, I once had.

    Hoping I make sense,…

    1. Just wanted to let you know I haven’t forgotten your question (or the one you just posted), but keep asking away and I’ll get to them.

    2. First thing I would do is just start off with 1 notebook. And then divide that notebook into your complete book ideas (i.e. “Book 1: About the Soviet Spy; Book 2: About the foster girl; Book 3: About the boy and his horse; etc.). And then, when you have ideas, make sure to decide which book those ideas would best fall under, then go to that one notebook and jot the idea down in the appropriate section. I would recommend also, transferring these ideas to Word documents so as not to lose them.

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